A Look Back At The Red Bull Culture Clash 2016!

The Red Bull Culture Clash 2016 was a whirlwind of reloads, surprises, gritty dubplates & hilarious back and forth insults between the teams. As usual Red Bull has managed to impress many scores of people. Mainly due to the variety of music at this year’s Culture Clash, making 2016’s installment one to remember!

Red Bull Culture Clash 2016!
Red Bull Culture Clash 2016!

The Red Bull Culture Clash 2016 saw 4 teams go head to head to win a 4 round sound clash competition.

 Eskimo Dance headed by Wiley, featuring a bag full of grime MCs.

 MIXPAXa New York based dancehall record label featuring the likes of PopcaanTony MatterhornSpice

US Rapper Wiz Kahlifa + Taylor Gang

THE UKG ALL STARS headed by So Solid’s Mega Man.

ROUND 1 – The Pressure Drop

10 Minutes per Team.

Eskimo Dance went first and came with a serious intro to the clash, Wiley ran onto the stage alongside fellow Roll Deep MC  to deliver a powerful rendition of “Wot Do You Call It”.  This was obviously directed at the UKG All Stars as Wiley has had an on & off beef with the garage scene since the Pay As U Go days. Eskimo Dance then brought out Chip & Stormzy, performing many of there hits and both causing pandemonium in the crowd. At this point, general opinion stated that this dropped too early. However they did set the levels very high from the start.

Unfortunately this started a running trend with the Eskimo Dance rounds. While the energy and performance was second to none the lack of dubs and direction made it sound more like a concert then a sound clash.

Wiley Eskimo Dance Round 1 - Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
Wiley Eskimo Dance Round 1 – Red Bull Culture Clash 2016

Mixpak, who we admittedly did not know a lot about until they walked onto the stage, started the clash how they intended to finish it – dubplate after dubplate!  Tony Matterhorn & Serocee lead from the front and the mighty Dre Skull & JubileeDJ behind the decks mixing masterfully. Mixpak’s first round was a explosive introduction to them and their style of play.

Next up was Wiz Kahlifa & The Taylor Gang. They definitely came into this clash on the back foot. Americans have never really done well at Culture Clash. ASAP MOB at the 2014 Red Bull Culture Clash being a prime example and no one expected them to perform well. We have all been proved wrong – Wiz came prepared and had definitely done his research, enabling him to smash it with a solid round of decent dubplates.

There first round was definitely not a weak performance!

Wiz khalifa & Taylor Gang Round 1 - Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
Wiz khalifa & Taylor Gang Round 1 – Red Bull Culture Clash 2016

Last but not least for round 1 came THE UKG ALL STARS with probably the best cameo of the night. The one and only Danny Dyer took up his role as Mick Cater to introduce them whilst slating all the other teams most notable saying “Wiley is about as scary as Ian Beale”. Majestic Mega Man took control of hosting duties and were a force to be reckoned with. UKG ALL STARS brought a great selection of perfectly mixed dubs! The highlight of their first round was the “Feed Em To The Lions” dub simply remixed to “Why The Fuck You Lying”. This had the crowd going crazy!



Our Round 1 Winners

Energy and Performance – Eskimo Dance

Best Dubplates Overall – Mixpak

Best Dub Of The Round – UKG ALL STARS – “Why The Fuck You Lying Dub”

 Round 2 – The Selector

15 Minutes Per Team.

Mixpak went first and hit the stage with an impressive dub and Brixton’s Sneakbo setting the levels from early. From then on the dubplates flew out at a high speed. Most notably they had a dub from man like Shaggy, and Popcaan also hit the stage for the first time. The best part of their round was no doubt Spice’s entrance. She hit the stage with a lot of energy and her antics sent the crowd wild! – You can watch her entrance here.

Spice mixpak Round 2 - red bull culture clash 2016
Spice mixpak Round 2 – red bull culture clash 2016

Wiz & The Taylor Gang proved they had come prepared for a proper sound clash. They dropped two gritty dubs from Stephan & Damien Marley the sons of Reggae Legend Bob MarleyThese two dubs tore up the crowd and set the bar for the rest of their round. Wiz also played a Rae Sremmurd dubplate which deserves a round of applause. Towards the end of the round Taylor Gang brought out New York’s Joey Bada$$Delivering a great performance and bringing his own unique style to Wiz’s round 2!

THE UKG ALL STARS didn’t seem phased at all by the competition. Evident through a specially made cartoon taking direct shots at Wiley, P Money, Chip, JME, Footsie & D Double E as their introduction to round 2. They followed this with a Robin S – “Show Me Love” dub. Further on in the round, they dropped a Wretch 32 dubplate. Which may have been the best dub of the whole clash. They had a dub of Wretch’s Banger “6 Words” mixed in with the drum and bass smash “Bricks Don’t Roll” by DJ Hazard. Dropped completely out of nowhere this tune turned an unsuspecting crowd into a huge moshpit!

They still had dubplates to play though, most notable from General LevyUK Apachi. The drum and bass legends SASASAS came onto the stage to perform their dub live and whipped the crowd into a frenzy.

UKG ALL STARS Round 2 - red bull culture clash 2016
UKG ALL STARS Round 2 – red bull culture clash 2016

Eskimo Dance Came into the round with high energy and mad stage presence, they brought though many guests MCs in this round including Lethal Bizzle, TwoFace, Discarda P Money. P Money had the best moment of this round when he dropped his smash “10/10” Which Logan Sama mixed perfectly into the famous “Rhythm and Gash” Instrumental. At this very moment P delivered his Originator bar, which was very well appreciated by the crowd. So much so, they went ballistic! This was the most energetic wheel up of round 2 – you can check that segment out here! There were also crazy performances from Kano, Ghetts, Newham Generals, Safone & more.

However this was another example of Eskimo’s only problem with the clash – despite the high energy & crazy stage performance it felt like it was more of a concert then a sound clash – two very different things and very different vibes.



Our Round 2 Winners

Energy and Performance – Eskimo Dance

Best Dubplates Overall – UKG ALL STARS

Best Dub of the Round – UKG ALL STARS – Wretch 32 “6 Words”

Round 3 – Sleeping With The Enemy

10 Minutes Per Team.

Wiz Kahlifa & The Taylor Gang started this round with some trash talking from Wiz’s baby mum Amber Rose followed by a “Tell Em Dont Waste My Time” dub from none other then Croydon’s own Krept & KonanThey set the bar high from the start and continued the round with numerous dubplates from Taylor Gang performing on many famous UK riddems including “Man Dont Care”, “Too Many Man” & “Functions on a low”Wiz didn’t stop his ode to UK sound there; he continued by bringing out Stylo G who brought his signature energy and delivery to the round. Then out of nowhere something mad happened, the elusive Ice Kid Appeared out of nowhere.

Honestly, we are not joking.

Ice Kid.

This sent every single grime musician and fan into a state of complete shock. Nobody one has seen Ice Kid in what feels like forever. Most had given up hope of ever seeing him again. Wiley has been trying to get Ice Kid to return to music since his shot to fame. Which came after Chipmunk and himself performed a famous Tim Westwood Freestyle in 2007.

Somehow Wiz made this happen and for that he gets a ultimate respect. He is welcome in the UK whenever! Extra points to Taylor Gang for this move! Wiz showed in this round that he had most definitely done his research on UK Music scene.

In our eyes he deserves a round of applause for a very well planned strategy for this Round.

THE UKG ALL STARS again entered the round with a hilarious visual slating the grime scene. Including taking the Mickey out of certain grime artists and their pop songs. They then continued to drop dub after dub from the likes of GIGGS, M Dargg, Lady LeshurrFlirta D & more. The one & only Dr Psycho then proceeded to call out Mixpak, stating they need to learn how to play reggae music properly. This was followed by a Ninjaman “Murda Dem” dubplate that any true reggae fan can’t help but acknowledge as a excellent play. They finished their round with an impressive Maverick Sabre “I Need” dub. This had the crowd singing along just to rub salt in the wounds left by an impressive display in round 3 from UK Garage!

ESKIMO DANCE brought out the legendary Tim Westwood to introduce them. Then Fekky took to the stage to perform his banger “Still Sittin’ Here” and introduced Evil B Aka B Live to perform the best dub of Eskimo’s 3rd round performance. A few more dubplates followed, including a “Lock Arff” dub. Eventually ending the round quite abruptly on an Ed Sheeran Dub that was started with less then 10 seconds on the clock and was cut off before it even started! – Would they try and pull it up in the next round?

Tim Westwood Eskimo Dance Round 3 - Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
Tim Westwood Eskimo Dance Round 3 – Red Bull Culture Clash 2016

Mixpak did not look at all phased by the cutting dubs played by the competition during round 3. And we found out why pretty quick. They started the round with a short video from Jazzie & our friends over at Grime Report TVLordie Big Narstie both discussing how all the other sounds were “DEAAAAAD”. Big Narstie, sporting a set of dreadlocks, then proceeded to jump onto the stage alongside Lordie and a few of the BDL Soldiers. Due to this the crowd went crazy. He performed a dub and then a selection of his bangers including “Hello Hi” & “Burst The Pipe”. Energy levels were through the roof & Narstie gave a great performance.

Popcaan then proceeded to tell Fekky to “Suck Yah Mother” and dropped a variety of hard and cutting dubs, including a version of Lethal Bizzle’s grime classic “Pow”, A very dark version of Teddy Bruckshot’s “Toppa Top Top” & a very sick Giggs “Talking The Hardest” dubplate.

Then when we thought it was all over Mixpak drew for one more wild card. With maybe less then a minute left on the clock out of no where Stratford’s own J Hus appeared on the stage and performed a crazy version of his anthem “Dem Boy Paigon” this sent every single person in the O2 nuts. J hus was there, no one expected that as he was serving a jail sentence, it’s reported he was only released that day.


– Mixpak –

Our Round 3 Winners

Energy and Performance – Mixpak

Best Dubplates Overall – Mixpak

Best Dub of the Round – Taylor Gang – Krept & Konan “Tell Em Don’t Waste My Time”

Round 4 – Armageddon

2 x 5 Minutes Per Team.

Round 4A

UKG ALL STARS kicked off round 4 with yet another visual. This time of a famous Chip interview where he stated “Grime came from the school of So Solid”. In addition Majestic then proceeded to talk trash to the other teams. At first people thought they dropped a Justin bieber dub, after he was done talking. It turned out to actually be Connor Maynard performing the dub on Justin’s track “Where Are U Now”.

This dub was then followed by a dubplate everyone expected UKG to drop, Craig David’s vocals burst out the speaker and the crowd went nuts as UKG played a Craig David dub over the same track. Craig David has jumped on this riddem a few times now and it was a great play from UKG to hold this dub till the later rounds.

ESKIMO DANCE then hit the stage with that Ed Sheeran dubplate that was cut off early in round 3. This was definitely a great dub, but they then proceeded to cut it short again. Why? To play a fake Adele “Hello” dub which was very obviously not Adele. Solo 45 performed an acapella of his banger “Feed Em To The Lions” which was greeted with a great crowd reception.

Eskimo Dance Round 4A - Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
Eskimo Dance Round 4A – Red Bull Culture Clash 2016

MIXPAK were not too happy about all these fake dubs being flung about by the other teams and made sure everyone knew how they felt. They played one dub for their first part of round 4, a cutting Major Lazer & DJ Snake – “Lean On” (feat. MØ) dub whipped the crowd into a frenzy and was definitely 100% authentic. Round 4 started effectively for Mixpak, only utilising 2 of the 5 minutes allowed.

Wiz Kahlifa & The Taylor Gang also had choice words for the rest of the teams, slating Eskimo for playing 2 tracks and then UKG for their fake dub. Wiz proceeded to state he came to “get high and party with everybody”. A very impressive Tove Lo – “Habits (Stay High)” dub started played while Taylor Gang threw giant joints into the crowd.

No we are not joking Wiz threw massive spliffs into the O2 arena, talk about intent to supply!

Wiz Khalifa & Taylor Gang Round 4A - Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
Wiz Khalifa & Taylor Gang Round 4A – Red Bull Culture Clash 2016


THE UKG ALL STARS looked to make a statement with their final dubplate, stating that the their scene is timeless. Mega Man brought in a crowd pleasing “Titanium” dub which had the entire crowd jumping and going mad. THE UKG ALL STARS finished the Culture Clash the way they started it; with a fiery dubplate and a impressive stage show.

THE UKG ALL STARS Round 4B - Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
THE UKG ALL STARS Round 4B – Red Bull Culture Clash 2016

Finally ESKIMO DANCE confidently took to the stage with Wiley shouting he had “the ultimate dubplate” to end the clash. Eskimo played a Jess Glynne “Rather Be” dubplate which was not the worst dub of the night by any means. However, it did not match the quality of the other dubs they dropped during the clash. Especially when they only played 15-20 seconds of an Ed Sheeran dub earlier. Then, dedicated a whole round to “Rather Be”. Definitely not Eskimo dance’s best round.

MIXPAK were not impressed by Eskimo’s performance one bit. That was made clear as soon as they entered with both Tony Matterhorn & Serocee slating Eskimo’s choice of final dub. Popcaan then grabbed the mic and introduced what some are calling the best dub of the night. Over the speakers came the instantly recognisable vocals of Drake . Mixpak had somehow got hold of an authentic “One Dance” dub.  This sent the crowd nuts and had one of the best reactions of the night, but was it enough for them to win?


Wiz Kahlifa & The Taylor Gang having already proved they were not to be taken lightly in this sound clash, came firing into the last round of the night with a cutting “We Dem Boyz” dub performed live by Wiz. This dubplate made all the other sounds look on in amazement as numerous mosh pits erupted in the crowd. Wiz and the Taylor Gang held their ground throughout this clash and deserve serious props for their performance.


– Mixpak –

Our Round 4 Winners

Energy and Performance – Mixpak

Best Dubplates Overall –Wiz Kahlifa & The Taylor Gang

Best Dub of the Round -Mixpak – Drake “One Dance”


– Mixpak –

Mixpak deserved to win, despite strong opposition from the other teams. They continued to fly out dubplate after dubplate and out-classed the other sounds at almost every turn. BIG UP MIXPAK!

We need to raise our hats to Wiz Khalifa & The Taylor Gang for their strong performance and obvious knowledge of Sound System culture. At first everyone doubted them, but by the end everyone left with a newfound respect for Taylor Gang!

THE UKG ALL STARS fought hard and showcased a bag of serious dubs. In addition to this they brought a flair of comedy to the clash but the other sounds did not. This definitely paid off for them and therefore big up all the garage crew!

ESKIMO DANCE’S 2016 Culture Clash is one you will remember as one of missed opportunities. While despite at points having the best energy and performance of the clash, the lack of dubplates and organisation lost them this battle.

Mixpak win the Red Bull Culture Clash 2016
Mixpak win the Red Bull Culture Clash 2016

Watch The Red Bull Culture Clash 2016 below!

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